Is It a Likeability-Vs-Competence World for Women ?

Jul 18, 2016 | Posted by admin in Events & Happenings   No Comments »

Mr Ram Kolavennu, VP, & Head HR &IT Strategy – Labour Net Services India Pvt Ltd with Prof Mohan Chandra

Foundation Fortnight is a platform that brings professionals from diverse background face to face with  the young professionals, sharing  their journey of life and success mantra. How they worked through the roadblocks with grit, hard work and foresight to reach where the world sees them now. It definitely is a cocktail of hard work, passion, clarity of purpose and vision. And the realisation that you can make a difference is pure bliss.Living a similar philosophy, Mr Ram Kolavennu, Vice President, & Head HR &IT Strategy – Labour Net Services India Pvt Ltd. was interacting with the new batch explaining them the the real nature   of ‘Social Enterprises’.  A social enterprise provides livelihood and skilling principle to the individuals who are at the bottom of the pyramid. there is a huge social aspect to it. He cited the examples of construction workers, truck drivers etc. In India, this class is usually from the  under privileged section. His organization Labour Net Services Ltd, which was established just three years ago could impart skill training and development to 5 million individuals.

He briefly recounted his journey from MBA to Labour Net Services Ltd and he realized that a he was at a point where he wanted to know and work on the priorities and purpose of his life. He advised students to put their vision on paper and visualize the same. He   shared his vision of training 10 million people under skill development by the year 2020.Work ethics is no less important. Introspection is imperative to understand the self. And ‘Out of box thinking and Innovation are very significant for growth of an organisation. Technology comes as a boon in all spheres. Like  ‘Simulation’ being widely used in training which involve risky motor training.

Prof Mohan Chandra, Ms Nimisha Jashnani-Heads, Disability Inclusion program-Capgemini ,Pavan Soni-Innovation Expert and Evangelist nd Dr Anil Rao-Dean & Director Welingkar,Bengaluru

During the second session of the day, when asked to pick up the faces that  the students could relate to, from the images shown, the youngsters picked up faces  that oozed out confidence and perosnae that looked energetic and charming. It was Ms Nimisha Jashnani-Heads, Disability Inclusion program at Capgemini India. And the rationale was to bring out the importance of the first 30 seconds when  it comes to leave a lasting impression. Discussing the ‘unconscious bias’ attitude  that plays so strongly on our minds and decisions Jashnani said it  was so common to have prejudices and notions based on communities, social groups, ethnicity   and even political affiliations.

Jashnani in her current role ensures accessible work place and non-discriminatory work culture to people with disabilities. During her discourse she cited few examples, case studies and views on problems encountered by women  in the corporate world. She admitted that the world was biased towards men. In the same line she mentioned the HBR case study – Heidi VS Howard Roizen – which brings forth competency vs likeability aspect.

The study revealed that women face a trade off between competence and likeability that men do not encounter. She further stated that women may lose her promotion because of her pregnancy but a man does not lose the opportunity of promotion after he achieves the status of ‘Father Hood’.She cited the examples of leading American corporate giants such as Google and Face book that are striving to bring to an end the concept of gender bias and balance the same  in their hiring where as companies such as GenPact and PepsiCo and EmC2 have are strong evangelists of    diversity at workplace along with sharp focus towards gender equality and  inclusion of the  disabled.

The Audience

According to World Bank report – exclusion of people with disability accounts to 3.7% of the GDP and those companies that adopt bio diversity policies have higher market capitalization. It is important for women to have confidence and to be ambitious. It is material for hiring manager when dealing with women employees/candidates  to be  aware of their  situations and be pragmatic in their selection process. She also talked about the  ’Implicit Association Test’ which helps to understand unconscious bias attitude level.


Have you ever tried defining creativity and   its signature traits? The session did.

Mr Pavan Soni in an animated discussion with the students

Delving into the finer details of the much celebrated trait of creativity was Pavan Soni, a known Innovation Expert and  Evangelist. Bringing out the different dimensions of  creativity with clearly crafted questions for the starry eyed audience. Giving them more elbow room, words were replaced with pen and paper. The young audience trying to put down their depictions of creativity in diagrams of different shapes and sizes and finally some crafted paper works from the sheet provided to them.


What is the real nature of creativity ? Is it a science or art? Is it innate or acquired?- Soni believes creativity  is a systematic process. Expounding creativity, he said creatives are  markedly open and uninhibited in their expression. Also they are unusually curious and have inquisitive mindset. They are highly networked in professional arena in the real world,not the virtual. He urged students to have expand their professional network . Lastly, a creative person is consistently on an experimental path which helps him to evolve.

A session in progress

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